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Dallas

▶︎ ThinkTank TurnStyle 10 V2.0

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ThinkTank recently released their new V2.0 TurnStyle bags and they kindly send me one for the purposes of this review. 

 

So, for the first time ever I have created a video review! Let me tell you upfront that this was no easy task. It took me the entire day and much of the evening to film and then edit into what I hope is a useful video for anybody thinking about buying this bag (not to mention the overnight upload to YouTube on a 512Kbps upload line!). Unfortunately I could only upload in 720p, so if you are watching on a high res monitor full screen is probably not a good idea. 

 

I used 2 cameras to make the video. The scenes of me were done using the Olympus E-M1 and the overhead demo was done using the Pen-F. The audio changed between them because the Pen-F doesn't have a mic input (I bought a Rode VideoMicro so that I can do more video for Fotozones).  

 

Anyway, hope you enjoy the video review format. It's a tad long, but hopefully useful. Please be constructive in the comments by letting me know what I can improve on for future videos (watch out for the bloopers at the end). :) 

 

 

Remember, you can support Fotozones by using this link to buy your TurnStyle bag directly from ThinkTank, who will also send you a nice little gift with it if you do. 

 

https://www.thinktankphoto.com/collections/turnstyle?rfsn=140410.92f763

 

Like this video? You can help incentivise me to make more content like this by supporting me via Patreon

 

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Sorry TT I think it would not be possible to conceive of a worse design for a camera bag, way too many twiddly bits! Going by the Dallas video quite difficult to get things in and out of it, a built in rain cove, well why not make it out of a waterproof material in the first place, just another twiddly bit to get lost and or flap about, back to the drawing board chaps! And I would bet there is not a left handed version? And god help anyone with DSLR outfit they've got no chance!

 

Dallas, I can't recall hearing your voice before! 


Mike Gorman

 

Lumix G9 , GX8 - Leica 12, 15, 20, 25, 42.5 - 8-18, 12-60, 35-100, 45-175

 

 

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Mike, I'm left handed. This bag is just fine for me. Sure, it may not work for everyone, but that's not a reason to slate it. And if you have a DSLR you can put it inside this version of the bag by changing the dividers about. Also, there is a larger version, the TurnStyle 20 which I am sure will accommodate bigger gear. 

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It was your video that prompted my reply, I will admit that it was the rain cover that was the main reason for my dislike of this bag but only the main reason because that tells me it is not water resistant! Also I noticed you struggling to get stuff in and out of the bag! That said I do still consider it a bad design! So we shall have to agree to disagree!

 

I'm not sure but this bag seems to be a design to fill a fashion slot in the ThinkTank range? I may be wrong but I don't think so!


Mike Gorman

 

Lumix G9 , GX8 - Leica 12, 15, 20, 25, 42.5 - 8-18, 12-60, 35-100, 45-175

 

 

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I think you're wrong Mike and apparently you missed the entire thrust of the video review, which is to describe it as a hybrid bag; not quite a shoulder bag, not quite a backpack, but somewhere in-between.

 

Why would you need such a bag? Because of the reasons I explained in the video. If you are moving around and you need to get your gear out without having to put the bag you are carrying down on the ground, this bag solves that issue. Also, if you have ever been in a shooting situation (like at an event) where you need to get lower angles, but are using a shoulder bag, you'll know that as soon as you shift your position gravity will draw that bag off of your shoulder. Also, most shoulder bags have flaps that get in the way or are hard to open, making it harder to get your gear out than this one ever could be. Have you ever had your shoulder bag open and in the process of trying to capture something while moving around had an item fall out? It's happened to me a few times. 

 

Trust me, I have tried many, many, many different types of camera bags in many different shooting situations. This bag is not a fashion statement - it's a practical solution to an everyday problem I have faced many times. I realise that these situations may not apply to you, but they will apply to many people who are similar to me. It's a good product and I am not being paid to say that. ThinkTank are a credible company making incredibly good solutions for people like me.  

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Dallas as I said we shall have to agree to disagree, I have no wish to have an argument with you! 


Mike Gorman

 

Lumix G9 , GX8 - Leica 12, 15, 20, 25, 42.5 - 8-18, 12-60, 35-100, 45-175

 

 

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1)  Great to finally hear your voice.

2)  There is a lot of hiss in the audio.  I think the camera internal audio gain may be set too high.

3)  Reviews are never easy to do.  I think you did a good job for the first video.  You'll only get better with more exposure to it.

  • Like 1

Nikon D500, D700, Df, 18-140/3.5-5.6 VR, 20/2.8D, 28-105/3.5-4.5D, 50/1.8D, 60/2.8D Macro, 80-200/4.5-5.6, 300/4E PF, 35/2D,  Tamron 70-200/2.8 VC

Manual Focus Lenses:  Nikon 55/3.5 Micro pre-AI, 105/2.5 AI, ZY Mitakon Creator 85/2

Olympus PEN-F, EM5.2, Olympus 9mm f/8 Fisheye, 17/1.8, 75-300/4.8-6.7 II, Panasonic 12-32/3.5-5.6, 12-35/2.8, 35-100/2.8, Sigma 60mm f/2.8 DN Art, ZY Mitakon 25/0.95
 

http://www.bestlightphoto.net | http://www.visualohio.com | http://bestlightphoto.blogspot.com | Flickr | SCEENEINWINDOWS Project

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Thanks Andrew, much appreciated. 

 

I am using the Rode Video Micro on the E-M1 for the first and last segments. The overhead was done with the Pen-F which doesn't have a mic input. The hiss in the last segment may have been a processing issue that I didn't get right. Or it might be that I left the studio window open and that's the sound of the wind in the trees outside. 

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I'm pretty sure that is hiss from the microphone.  If it were wind, it would be intermittent.  From my end it sounded pretty constant.


Nikon D500, D700, Df, 18-140/3.5-5.6 VR, 20/2.8D, 28-105/3.5-4.5D, 50/1.8D, 60/2.8D Macro, 80-200/4.5-5.6, 300/4E PF, 35/2D,  Tamron 70-200/2.8 VC

Manual Focus Lenses:  Nikon 55/3.5 Micro pre-AI, 105/2.5 AI, ZY Mitakon Creator 85/2

Olympus PEN-F, EM5.2, Olympus 9mm f/8 Fisheye, 17/1.8, 75-300/4.8-6.7 II, Panasonic 12-32/3.5-5.6, 12-35/2.8, 35-100/2.8, Sigma 60mm f/2.8 DN Art, ZY Mitakon 25/0.95
 

http://www.bestlightphoto.net | http://www.visualohio.com | http://bestlightphoto.blogspot.com | Flickr | SCEENEINWINDOWS Project

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Andrew, if you're referring to hiss heard in the beginning, that's actually a sound effect of water on a river. Well, that's what they are calling it in FCX anyway... ::)

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10 hours ago, DDFZ said:

Andrew, if you're referring to hiss heard in the beginning, that's actually a sound effect of water on a river. Well, that's what they are calling it in FCX anyway... ::)

 

No, I hear hiss all the way through.  If I have time, I'll go back and re-analyze.


Nikon D500, D700, Df, 18-140/3.5-5.6 VR, 20/2.8D, 28-105/3.5-4.5D, 50/1.8D, 60/2.8D Macro, 80-200/4.5-5.6, 300/4E PF, 35/2D,  Tamron 70-200/2.8 VC

Manual Focus Lenses:  Nikon 55/3.5 Micro pre-AI, 105/2.5 AI, ZY Mitakon Creator 85/2

Olympus PEN-F, EM5.2, Olympus 9mm f/8 Fisheye, 17/1.8, 75-300/4.8-6.7 II, Panasonic 12-32/3.5-5.6, 12-35/2.8, 35-100/2.8, Sigma 60mm f/2.8 DN Art, ZY Mitakon 25/0.95
 

http://www.bestlightphoto.net | http://www.visualohio.com | http://bestlightphoto.blogspot.com | Flickr | SCEENEINWINDOWS Project

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Dallas, The video is quite well done ! Nice to hear you ! 

I listen to it using the laptop speakers and while there is some hiss, it did not bother me and I was able to understand perfectly

I have seen other review videos with people using a microphone attached to their shirt and the audio is indeed better

 

What software did you use to edit the video? 

 

Regarding the bag ... maybe if I have bigger mirrorless cameras, for the V1 is to much

 

Do you have more ideas about creating videos ? 

 

 

  • Like 1

Regards,

Armando

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Thanks Armando! 

 

You can get both a smaller and larger version of this TurnStyle bag. Maybe go check out their website for more info? I think they are pretty neat. 

 

I am using Final Cut Pro X, but have a lot to learn. The audio is with a Rode VideoMicro shotgun mic I bought specifically for this. I have actually just finished setting up an overhead shooting rig with better lighting so I am going to be doing a bit more work on unboxing and demos, etc. However, before I can go much deeper into this video stuff I need to invest in a proper video camera. The Olympus E-M1's I have are rudimentary at best for video, so I am looking to purchase a Panasonic GH-4 2nd hand to improve my work.

 

Video might very well become my main thing looking ahead as one of my website clients is in the process of setting up a tuition centre where video lessons will play a role. I am their first choice tech person to not only set up the website (I already did this one for them) but also produce the video lessons. 

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I like your video. Maybe a little too long, but better than most of the equipment review videos found on YouTube.

Clever idea with the felt on the rear caps. You could maybe glue/tape a bit of velcro to one of the caps to stop them from sliding around.

 

I recently bought the larger version called TurnStyle 20. I have only used it for one short trip yet, filled with my Nikon D810 and three lenses. 

It's my third sling type bag, the two others being a LowePro SlingShot and a Tenba 123-GO-20. My problem with them are that they have too much padding, making them stiff and ungainly. The TurnStyle with its thinner padding is easier both to carry and to get my stuff in and out of. 

For short hikes off-road I'll probably still use the Tenba, which can also be used with two straps like an ordinary backpack. For walking around in the streets I'll choose the TurnStyle.

 

I have also thought about finding a way to secure those zippers, but I haven't decided what to do yet. I hope you will let us know if you find a good solution to that problem.  

 

  • Like 1

Jan-Petter

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Hi, Dallas, sorry for my long absence.  I missed you all but, for some reason, haven't had a chance to log in here.

 

Congrats on your first video review.  I think the review is thorough and your comments are easy to understand.

 

My only humble criticism would be the audio.  So far as I'm listening to the audio on my computer (meaning, in a casual, not too critical situation), neither the hiss or the background noise bothers me.  What might detracting a bit would be the reverberation in the room.  A lavalier microphone would work better than that of a shotgun type.

  • Like 1

"The eye is blind if the mind is absent." - Confucius

http://www.flickr.com/photos/akiraphoto/

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Thanks for the feedback, Akira. :) 

 

Yes, this audio business is all new to me. I think the issue is probably because there are no sound absorbing materials apart from a few curtains in the room. If the videos I make in the future catch on I will invest in better audio gear, for sure. 

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Dallas, controlling the acoustic character of a room is very tricky.  So, I would think it is more reasonable to employ the microphone that is more immune to the acoustic environment.  That's why I mentioned the lav mic.  When the sound source (your own voice in this case) is closer to the microphone, you can lower the level, which reduces the environmental and electronic interferences like the background noise, hiss noise and the reverberation from the room.


"The eye is blind if the mind is absent." - Confucius

http://www.flickr.com/photos/akiraphoto/

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      One of our guests on this safari had brought his gear over from the US in the bigger ThinkTank Airport Security V2.0 roller. While we were waiting to board the plane back to JHB from KMIA after the safari we were both approached by a ground personnel individual and asked to gate check the rollers as we walked out to the plane from the gate. She seemed a little unassertive, so we both refused, citing the contents as being too valuable to check. She relented easily enough and we boarded the aircraft with our rollers ahead of everyone else, found our seats, stowed them above us and sat down to enjoy the flight. I also had no problem getting the roller onboard the Kulula flight back to my home city, Durban. Job done. Thank you ThinkTank!
       
      If you're thinking about getting this case, I can highly recommend it. You'll fit a decent amount of kit into it and it has some pretty neat features, including a raincoat, lockable zippers, external pockets and also a system for attaching your monopod or tripod to the outside of it. There's also a combination lock you can use to secure your case to a pole or something immovable if you need to be away from it for a short while. I can see this coming in handy when shooting on location. The build quality is also top notch.
       
      If I can offer some criticism of the case it's that I found some of the dividers a little too stiff to configure nicely. I think if they could make them a bit more flexible it would be a whole lot more awesome as a solution for your camera travels. Also, the telescopic handle of this model seems very thin and flimsy compared to its bigger brother's handle. Speaking of handles, ThinkTank have placed one on three of the cases edges, which makes it very easy to hoist from any angle. That's clever design.
       
      The inside also zips out completely so you can wash it out thoroughly, especially if you're in the habit of dragging your roller into dusty locations, which we tend to do a lot on safari! My associate Pepe is now using this roller permanently and I have opted to use the larger one, the Airport Security V2.0 which I will discuss in my next article.
       
      If you are in the USA you can buy this bag directly from ThinkTank and get a free gift when you use this link.
       
      Note: unfortunately the images for this article were lost in a software upgrade. 
       

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    • By Dallas
      ThinkTank recently released their new V2.0 TurnStyle bags and they kindly send me one for the purposes of this review. 
       
      So, for the first time ever I have created a video review! Let me tell you upfront that this was no easy task. It took me the entire day and much of the evening to film and then edit into what I hope is a useful video for anybody thinking about buying this bag (not to mention the overnight upload to YouTube on a 512Kbps upload line!). Unfortunately I could only upload in 720p, so if you are watching on a high res monitor full screen is probably not a good idea. 
       
      I used 2 cameras to make the video. The scenes of me were done using the Olympus E-M1 and the overhead demo was done using the Pen-F. The audio changed between them because the Pen-F doesn't have a mic input (I bought a Rode VideoMicro so that I can do more video for Fotozones).  
       
      Anyway, hope you enjoy the video review format. It's a tad long, but hopefully useful. Please be constructive in the comments by letting me know what I can improve on for future videos (watch out for the bloopers at the end).  
       
       
      Remember, you can support Fotozones by using this link to buy your TurnStyle bag directly from ThinkTank, who will also send you a nice little gift with it if you do. 
       
      https://www.thinktankphoto.com/collections/turnstyle?rfsn=140410.92f763
       
      Like this video? You can help incentivise me to make more content like this by supporting me via Patreon. 
       

       
    • By Dallas
      ThinkTank have released what I think is probably the perfect roller for the photographer who needs to travel by air with a decent amount of kit on any kind of photography excursion.  
       
      As many of my readers over the years will already know, one of the biggest problems I have had since I began hosting photo safaris, is picking a suitable means of travelling with my gear on local flights. In the past I have used both the other (older) ThinkTank Airport rollers, namely the International and the Security. Both have their own strengths as conveyors of equipment, but for the most part they are also part of the problem in that they weigh a fair amount before you have even put any gear in them. 
       
      These days the airlines are getting stricter with the carry on luggage limits and most of them in South Africa limit you to 7 or 8 kilos in a single carry on item for economy class seats. There is no way I would be able to get away with dragging the Airport Security V2.0 onboard a local flight as hand luggage these days. It’s a wonderful case to keep your gear safe in, but it’s not the most inconspicuous, mainly because of its size. When the cabin crew who man the gangways and plane doors see you bringing it onboard they will most definitely stop you and ask you to sky check it. The Airport International is a bit smaller than the Security, but it is still big enough to attract unwanted attention from the cabin crew. 
       
      In preparation for this year’s Ultimate Big 5 Safari I was in a bit of a quandary when it came to deciding which bag I should use. On the two previous safaris I used the ThinkTank Retrospective 50 which swallows up an incredible amount of gear, including my 13” MacBook Pro and a bunch of other things like chargers, hard drives and power supplies. I like that bag a lot, but it is a bit large to carry around casually and I also had an issue a few years ago in getting it to fit in the overhead of a small plane. When fully loaded it also doesn’t easily go under the seat in front of you. 
       
      My favourite and most used camera bag is the ThinkTank Retrospective 7. It can carry both of my Olympus E-M1 bodies, the Oly 50-200mm (without hood and tripod mount) and a bunch of other items I would want on the safari. However, the pouch on the rear of that bag is designed for iPads and isn’t big enough to fit my 13” laptop. Despite this I had pretty much decided that this was going to be my bag because I could always carry the laptop in its Thule case as a personal item and/or put it into that rear slip long side up. 
       
      Then ThinkTank announced the Airport Advantage about 2 weeks prior to my departure. Just by looking at photos of it and watching the video on their website I knew that this would be the perfect case for me to take on safari this year. About a week or so later it arrived at my door via courier and boy was I happy to meet it! 
       
      The Airport Advantage is a lot lighter and more importantly slighter in stature than the other ThinkTank Airport rollers, which means that when you look at it, it doesn’t attract any unwanted cabin crew attention. Yet this roller, in spite of this diminished appearance, possesses some sort of TARDIS-like magical power because it swallows up a lot of stuff, including some very large lenses which people coming on our safaris here in Southern African have been known to bring with them. 
       
      Configuration Options
       
      Like all bags with padded dividers there are a lot of configuration options for the interior of this roller. You get a decent amount of dividers with the case too, as well as a raincoat (more about the raincoat later). The three-part telescopic handle only runs about halfway down the spine of the case so the bottom section has enough depth to accommodate the largest of DSLR’s, including gripped ones, with their big lenses attached. 
       
      Typically on our safaris we find most of our guests bring two camera bodies, one main telephoto lens (the 200-400mm seems to be the most popular lens), a 70-200/2.8 and a wide angle like the 14-24/2.8, a flash, teleconverters and maybe one or two smaller lenses. So I took the opportunity on this most recent safari to see how this kind of kit would fit into the Airport Advantage. 
       
      Below are some photos showing exactly how it handled a Nikon D4 with 200-400mm f/4 attached, as well as a D3s with the new 300mm f/4 PF with a 2x TC and the 70-200/2.8 on the side. I also put a Canon 7D Mk II with a 300mm f/2.8 and its hood un-reversed in there. You can see for yourself how easily it accommodates these large items and how much room is left over for other things. 
       

       

       

       
      For my gear I had more than enough space to carry not only my 13” MacBook Pro (there’s a sleeve on the front for that), but 2 Olympus E-M1’s, the Olympus 50-200mm f/2.8-3.5 SWD, Olympus 12-40mm f/2.8 PRO, Olympus 75/1.8, Sigma 19/2.8 & 60/2.8, 2x battery chargers, 2x external hard drives, lots of cables, a back-up card reader and a whole bunch of other items like extra batteries. I even had a dedicated space for my Peak Design Slide and Leash straps. It really is quite an incredible roller! 
       

       
      With everything packed I weighed it on the bathroom scale and it came in at around 10kgs, which is still over the official carry-on limit, but the thing is because it’s so compact it doesn’t look like a heavy bag and nobody raised an eyebrow at all on my 2 domestic flights this time around. 
       
      Features
       
      While it is a truly amazing roller, there are one or two things about the Advantage that I think could be improved on. 
       
      Raincoat
      Firstly the raincoat, like all other bag raincoats I have ever tried to use in a hurry, simply eludes me. We were out on a game drive and it started to rain, so I tried to cover it up but nothing seemed to fit logically. Eventually I just gave up and left it lying on top of the case as we made our way back to the camp. They really ought to coat these cases in something more water resistant than nylon. Maybe a lining inside the nylon would be better? 
       
      Pockets
      The other thing that I would like to have had is an external pocket to put my travel documents in. There is a zippered recess just underneath where you can put your business cards, but it isn’t deep enough to hold much more than a passport, and even that is a bit of a wiggle to get in on its own. I think that they could put a pouch on the flap of the laptop compartment which would then make this the absolute perfect safari travel roller. 
       
      Unlike the other Airport rollers I have used where there is a stretchy sleeve on the front for putting your laptop in, only to have it fall out if you’re not careful, the Advantage has a proper sleeve with a velcro flap. The sleeve doesn’t have any padding though, so if you’re going to travel with your laptop in there it’s a good idea to have some extra protection for your hardware. I use the Thule semi-hard shell for my MacBook and it survived not only a couple of hours in the overhead bins of the planes I went on, but also 12 hours of road transit between Johannesburg and the Sabi Sands. I was careful to make sure that no other bags were placed on top of it though. 
       
      Handles
      There are handles on three sides of the Advantage which makes hoisting it into overhead bins quite easy. I like the design of the handle on the bottom of the case which also doubles as its balancing feet. A nice touch. 
       

       
      The other top quality finish is the telescopic handle. This feels very well made. I have wondered though why ThinkTank opted to use a dual shaft handle instead of a single one on this roller. I think it may have been a better design to use a single telescopic shaft that is housed on the outside of the back instead of two shafts that use up space on the inside of the case. Perhaps v2.0 will see some of these refinements? 
       
      Tripod Attachment
      If you are travelling with a tripod it is possible to strap one onto the side of the Advantage and Think Tank supply removable straps for you to use with the loops on the bag. Personally I always put my tripod in my checked luggage so I doubt I would use this, unless I was using the roller on a local shoot and needed to take a tripod with.  
       
      Lockable
      Unlike the big brother Airport Security, this roller doesn’t have a built-in TSA lock but it is possible to lock it from the zipper with your own luggage lock. I have a cheap combination lock which I have no doubt any thief could probably gnaw off in a matter of seconds, but I suppose it’s better than nothing if your bag might be unattended for a short while. 
       
      Wheels
      The wheels are super smooth to run and I put those to the test properly when I had to literally sprint through OR Tambo airport to board my flight home on time. I think Wayde Van Niekerk better watch out - this old dude can shift his molecules quickly when he needs to!  
       
      Conclusion
       
      In spite of my few little nitpicks and improvement suggestions, this is by far the most useful travelling case I have ever used for my camera gear. For people coming on our safaris it’s just about all you will need to bring out not only your essential camera gear but also a fair amount of accessories and of course your computer too. I highly recommend getting one to simplify your travels with cameras. 
       
      If you would like to support Fotozones please use the link below to order your Airport Advantage. A percentage of each sale is paid to us in commission AND you will also get a free gift from ThinkTank when placing your order using this link.
       
      ORDER YOUR AIRPORT ADVANTAGE HERE
       

       
       

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